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Inspiring Success on the Road to Recovery

Friday, April 1, 2016

Field of Dreams & The Field of All Possibilities

By Cary Bayer   www.carybayer.com


Every April, the eyes of baseball fans turn to their national pastime as hope springs eternal in their hearts. As they dream of pennant races, I slip a DVD into my DVR and watch Field of Dreams for the umpteenth April. To me, it’s the ultimate baseball and metaphysical movie.
When I was pursuing my Masters degree at Maharishi International University in Fairfield, Iowa, its founder, Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, spoke of his dream of creating Heaven on Earth. A few years later, W.P. Kinsella turned Iowa into Heaven — at least an Iowa farmland into Heaven for deceased baseball players — in his novel, Shoeless Joe. Director Phil Alden Robinson adapted it for the screenplay for Field of Dreams, making us laugh, cry, and imagine big thoughts of Eternity. He also avoided being corny, no mean feat when you’re surrounded by so much corn.
The film’s field of dreams is akin to the pure field of Creative Intelligence that Maharishi described as a field of all possibilities. Possibilities — at least of immortality for dead ballplayers —plays a central role in this film. The ball field was also a place for a novelist (J.D. Salinger in the book, the fictitious Terence Mann in the movie) to discover immortality, and maybe write about it after years of pain and publishing silence.
“We’re dealing with primal forces of nature here,” Ray Kinsella (played so sincerely by Kevin Costner) tells his wife Annie. We’re dealing with the field from where all of Nature’s forces are structured, is how Maharishi would have put it. Ray quotes Mann to the novelist himself:

“the universe opens itself up for a few seconds to show you what’s possible.” 

Those practicing Maharishi’s meditation, or the Higher Self Healing Meditation that I teach, have experienced that in the deepest part of their mind is the Transcendent field of pure potential which opens up for a few seconds in meditation to show them the Infinite, and what indeed is a possible state of consciousness to live from forever.
Meditating physicists have said that Maharishi’s field of Creative Intelligence sounds like the quantum field. Each is described as a field out of which all things manifest: baseball players in the film, and all of life in Maharishi’s teachings. In meditation, the meditator experiences that things (perceptions, thoughts, the mantra itself) also vanish into that field. In the film, ballplayers do the same into the cornfield beyond their field of dreams.

If You Build it He’ll Come

This is the message from a voice that Ray hears in the movie. In time he interprets it to mean build a baseball field. After he does, players come first to practice, and then to play full games like schoolboys on an endless summer day.
The movie is also about of innocence, and the vision of eternity that comes to all those with a childlike spirit. Ray, his wife, and young daughter all see these baseball ghosts, but his commerce-obsessed brother-in-law is blind to them, and thinks Ray is a fool for mowing down a cornfield and its lucrative crop to build a baseball stadium that nobody uses. Mann convinces Ray not to sell the farm because people will have a desire to flock to this mystical baseball field, even though they don’t know why — to presumably find the answer to their dreams, as well.
Jesus said we enter Heaven only when we become innocent, like children. Even Frank Sinatra sang, “Fairy tales can come true/They can happen to you/If you’re young at heart.”
Former hippies and Berkeley grads, Ray and Annie are young at heart, follow their dreams, and it leads to athletic immortality for the heroes of his fan’s heart, and reunion and completion with his own father.  The Voice told Ray that if he builds it he would come; all along we think that the he in question is Shoeless Joe Jackson, his father’s hero. Only at the end do we realize that it’s not just his father’s hero, but Ray’s late father, himself who he was estranged from, who comes. By the tearful ending, Ray’s father has become his hero, as well.